Review by Ryder Islington

Iris Johansen writes tight plots, but what I love about her stories is her ability to bring the character to life. In her Eve Duncan Forensics Thriller Series, Eve Duncan is a forensic sculptor who creates faces on skulls of unidentified remains.
Eve’s significant other, Joe Quinn, is a former SEAL, and very protective of Eve. And then there’s Bonnie. Years have passed since little Bonnie disappeared.

Now a phone call from someone on the bad side of the law is offering her a deal. If she will come to his armed compound in South America and use her skills to identify a skull for him, he will find the person responsible for Bonnie’s disappearance.

All of these characters are alive with feelings, problems, and histories and each has a reason for their actions. Of course, Eve must go, and of course, Joe objects.

The questions are will Eve make it out alive, and if she does will she finally find some peace in the loss of her daughter? Will the relationship between Joe and Eve survive their stubborness?

This story is a roller coaster ride as different STALEMATES develop among the characters. This book is a must read for readers of suspense and thrillers.


Ms. Fairchild is teaching another class. This time it’s Eleven Edits You Must Make To Look Like A Pro. This is a two week class from November 1, to November 15.

Further details are available at or at

I’ve taken two classes from Ms. Fairchild and they were both packed with excellent information. She spends time with students, reviewing your work and making suggestions.

I’ll return for another article later, but couldn’t pass up the opportunity to share this vital information for all writers.


Well, step one took a while, but it was worth it. now I know that all of my adult characters sound very much alike. I’ve done the first round of revisions requested by my editor and I explained what I wanted to do with the voices. She thought it was a good idea.

So here I go.

I’ve done really well with the child and the older Black cop, and the southern gentleman.

The child, Wile, was pretty easy. I remember being a child in the south. I’m working on: ain’t, gonna, ever body, ever where. And using very simple word choices.

For the Black cop, Russell Coleman, I took the language I originially wrote–which was my voice–and changed a lot of words to something more simple, like: averted his gaze= looked away; meditated=thought on it; beneath=under. Then I peppered in a few southern words: fixing to; tote; ornery; ruckus; no count; polecat.

For the southern gentleman, Trey Fontaine, I left the bigger words as listed above, but added: yes, ma’am, no, ma’am, much obliged. I want to do more with him, but haven’t decided what.

Now I’m dealing with a 35 yr old white female, Gemini Taylor, who has spent half her life in south Louisiana and the other half in Dallas, TX. She’s a cop. I’ve tried making most of her sentences very short, as if she’s always in a hurry. I don’t like the sound of it. It sounds choppy. Maybe it’s supposed to. But I tend to write longer sentences, broken up by a short one here and there. Mostly short sentences certainly doesn’t sound like me.

I hope everyone who reads this article will send me at least one idea on how to create voice.

In the future I plan to do articles on the town and each of the characters in my book, so I hope you’ll stick with me.


Kristen Lamb is a writer. She’s also a lover of the world, and sends love out through her blog found at her webstie:

Kristen knows how much writers want to just write. But she also knows that we live in a whole new world that revolves around the internet. So she wrote a great book titled We Are Not Alone–The Writer’s Guide To Social Media. In this book, Kristen teaches us about the author’s platform, creating a brand, how to build a blog, and how to get potential readers through social media.

I took a class from her this week and learned tons about how to make my blog work for me. She explains how to get your name at the top of the que on search engines, how to name your blog and what kind of content should be there to encourage readers to visit time and time again.

She also teaches a class called Warrior Writer’s Boot Camp. Sounds tough, huh? According to Kristen, it is. But sometimes we need a strong drill instructor to help us get to the next level–which could mean getting published, or could mean creating a best seller.

Kristen Lamb is a kind, intelligent, experienced writer who is willing to help other writers fulfill their dreams. She believes in making herself accessible, and her blog reader friendly. I have been blessed by her knowledge, her generosity, and her talent, and I hope that all writers will visit her blog and see for themselves how much they need what she has to offer.